How did I manage to live this long in the Western world without reading an AJ Jacobs book? Sure, I know who he is. I’ve seen him give very funny interviews. I even followed some of the follow up projects to his biblical living project.
A few weeks ago I came across “The Know-It-All” at the local library in the audio books. It wasn’t Jacobs himself doing the reading, but the actor was great.
I really enjoyed this book as a bit of light non-fiction reading. Jacobs takes on the project of reading the whole Encyclopaedia Britannica. Literally A to Z. At first the project seems to turn him into a jerk showing everyone how smart he is. Either he gets nicer or I started to find his jerkiness endearing.
The book is a mix of personal stories of his time reading the encyclopaedia (working at Esquire, trying to get pregnant) and interesting entries. I use the term interesting quite loosely, as some of the stories and facts are a bit of snooze. However, the whole thing comes together to give you a picture of the book and reader. Quirky. A little over-intellectualized. Generally educational.
While I was tempted to jump right into “My Year of Living Biblically”, I think one more descriptor is appropriate – good in small doses.